Live-streaming is apparently hot enough that Facebook wants in on the action.
Zuckerberg and Co. on Wednesday launched a new live video service, which is similar to Twitter’s Periscope app and its main competitor Meerkat, but just for famous people. Billed as an “immersive and authentic way to connect with the public figures you care about,” the new service lets athletes, musicians, politicians, and other “influencers” share live video from the Facebook Mentions app for their fans on the social network.
While anyone can view live streams, only public figures with a verified Facebook page can host one.
Facebook says the new Live feature will let public figures “take fans behind the scenes, host a Q&A, share announcements, and more — all in real time.” The company has already signed up a few celebrities who have agreed to host live broadcasts, including Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Serena Williams, Luke Bryan, Ricardo Kaká, Ashley Tisdale, Lester Holt, Martha Stewart, and Michael Bublé.
You can discover these live videos from public figures you follow in your News Feed. As a viewer, you’ll be able to comment on, like, or share the video while watching a live broadcast.
You can also see when your friends or other public figures start watching a stream. If you missed a broadcast, you’ll be able to watch it later on the public figure’s Facebook page — so long as the person doesn’t delete it.
Launched in July 2014, Facebook Mentions lets public figures such as actors, athletes, musicians, and government officials more easily manage their Facebook presence and engage with fans on the social network. Those with access to the app can use it to track conversations about themselves, share updates, post photos and videos, and host live Q&As right from their phones.